Prince Philip and his reaction to the Charles and Diana divorce

Prince Philip was the husband to Queen Elizabeth for 74 years, the father to the future king Prince Charles and has played a huge role in the monarchy over that period.

One of the biggest scandals of the monarchy over his time as the Duke of Edinburgh came when his eldest son’s first marriage fell apart.

When Princess Diana and Prince Charles announced their divorce in 1992, the world was stunned.

After the Princess of Wales’ scandalous Panorama interview with Martin Bashir, the Queen wrote to both her and Charles personally, advising them to divorce.

In the interview, the Princess did not shy away from the difficult questions. She answered questions on everything from self-harm, to suffering with bulimia, and Charles’ involvement with Camilla Parker-Bowles.

Infamously, the interview can be summed up with one quote: “Well, there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded.”

Letters unearthed in 2003 found that Prince Philip took Diana’s side when things “got messy” between her and Prince Charles.

In the 1992 letters, he wrote: “Charles was silly to risk everything with Camilla for a man in his position.

“I cannot imagine anyone in their right minds leaving you for Camilla. Such a prospect never even entered our heads.”

The letter was signed off with, “with fondest love, Pa.”

It was reported by The Sunday Times that Charles tried to block these letters from getting to the press, suggesting that they were authentic.

“I am quite ready to concede that I have no talent as a marriage counsellor,” the duke reportedly wrote.

However, he also made it clear that he would not support Diana having new romantic relationships of her own, writing: “We do not approve of either of you having lovers.”

From this letter, one can tell that Philip expressed sympathy and support to his daughter-in-law, and offered to act as mediator between her and Charles.

SWL looks at the impact of Philips death on the monarchy and the nation in this video:

The Mirror included scans of multiple letters from Diana to her father-in-law, in which she asks for his guidance and thanks him for his replies.

According to Patrick Jephson, Princess Diana’s private secretary at the time, her in-laws’ support meant a lot to her.

“Here at last was written proof that this was acknowledged, recognised, and there was sympathy for her,” he said.

You can check out all of SWL’s Prince Philip coverage here.

Featured image credit: Joe Haupt on Flickr via CC license

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